It's always difficult to know how a team is going to come in after a 3 day layoff, especially when the layoff is Christmas break. The Hawks were fantastic all over the ice tonight and Patrick Sharp was something special. On his 32nd birthday, Patrick Sharp had a hat trick and he actually saved the best for last. On a Matt Duchene breakaway, he went back and without a penalty he stole the puck and passed it to a streaking Jonathan Toews who deeked his way to his second goal of the night. Other streaks that were continued: Patrick Kane with his 13th straight game with a point….and his assist wasn't a gimme. It was a feed from the boards from Kris Versteeg. Kaner opened the space and fed a wide open Michal Handzus for an easy open net goal. Hawks are one point ahead (60 points) of an idol Anaheim (who also has one game in hand on the reach for the conference lead). The Hawks play back to back tomorrow with a game against their new rivals…in St. Louis. St. Louis has beaten the Hawks both times this season. The Hawks seek to be up on St. Louis in the Standings (53pts/ 36 played) and gain a slight edge even if the Blues can win their 4 games in hand. SO, this game is very important in that regard. This game will be #41 for the Hawks,…the halfway point. If the Hawks could win, they would be on pace for a 120points + season. That is the recipe for success in the West. 5 teams are within striking distance of the conference lead. (Hawks, Ducks, Kings, Blues, Sharks).
Today's Goals: (3) Sharp, (2) Toews, (1) Handzus, (1) Versteeg.
Hawks fans and Blues fans will be looking forward to tomorrow's matchup in St. Louis. Let's Go Hawks!!!